The Accidental Rush for Anthrax Island
Gruinard Island, in the north-west of Scotland, was where Britain tested its biological weapons. That story's been told many times: but I found something in the archives that I don't think anyone's ever noticed before.

Thanks to the boat crew and voice artists!
Location fixer: Vikki McCraw at Locations 365

SOURCES from the National Archives:
WO 188/2783
WO 188/3169
WO 32/20442
DEFE 55/118
DEFE 68/991, 992, 993

One other stories I found but couldn't fit into the video: the government spent a long time trying to work out the legal ramifications of selling the island back. In the end, they agreed to guarantee the cleanup for 150 years, which to me is the strongest evidence that there's nothing dangerous left there: they wouldn't have taken that risk otherwise!

Filmed safely:

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  • Tom Scott
    Tom Scott

    This is the first of three videos from the west of Scotland! It's good to be back on the road again. Uh, and back on the water, I guess.

    • Døn't Førget Abøut TØP
      Døn't Førget Abøut TØP

      Omg I was just on holiday there where were you 😅

    • macronencer

      "Uh", Tom? Not "er"? Were you punched in the stomach, or have you become American? ;-)

    • Miki's Gaming
      Miki's Gaming

      im wondering who the voice artists are as i think i recognise one from an audiobook.

    • marvin luther
      marvin luther

      hi scott i am just a lowlife nowbody with no social media or any mediapresence in the internet whatsoever... but i have really good ideas and concepts and i an curious if you... a famous youtube legend whould take some time to just visit a fan of yours to sit down for a tea to have a conversation? it whould be great!

    • Sarah White
      Sarah White

      I feel like I've stumbled into a goldmine finding your channel Tom... I have so much of your incredible research work to watch. Thank you for informing, educating and most of all entertaining us with your warm personality 🥰

  • Not 2 busy
    Not 2 busy

    Ahha! So, you made up this story so that YOU could buy this island, convincing everyone else that it was no longer for up sale. Fiendishly clever !! I think you are seriously clever at finding these tidbits and bringing them to light. To make something interesting out of what otherwise would have been regarded, by most, as just a lump of rock. Thanks again.

  • A Laputa
    A Laputa

    One of our US reporters unnecessarily heightening the fear factor for views? Never...

    • A Laputa
      A Laputa

      It's too bad mainstream reporting isn't like this. If it was all backed by good research and a cool head like Tom's people wouldn't believe the world is terrible and on fire all the time.

  • Abigail Fennigan
    Abigail Fennigan

    If you go there, you won't be among the living. If you leave you'll be spreading the disease. But don't worry, you won't know. You'll be in a state of euphoria. Like they got hit with a fistful of metal. It's a madhouse.

  • Charlie

    For more information on this story and some of the other atrocities that Britain committed against their own people just look up 'Porton down' on Google.

  • Charlie

    Just like Britain didn't mislead young privates into being used for experiments 😂 good one Tom.

  • Kenny Brunton
    Kenny Brunton

    It doesn't sound abhorrent whilst we're in the middle of a pandemic created in a Chinese lab.

  • Internet Things
    Internet Things

    Banana 🍌

  • Bijan Izadi
    Bijan Izadi

    So your saying it DOESNT have anthrax anymore and it only cost £500???

  • SnopFop

    Thank you!

  • MrMatteNWk

    5:08 HEY, MISSUS PRIME MINISTA! MAGGIE! Ay mate! What's the offer? One thousand dollarydoos?!

  • Mitch Thompson
    Mitch Thompson

    Hi Tom, do you know about Operation Cauldron over the water on the Isle of Lewis? Barges with monkeys on board being tested for radiation during the war and after. There's a massive concrete pier that was specifically built to hold the barges.

  • Replaymyway

    I am here because someone said there was a surprisingly cheap Scottish island for sale, who do I see about it?

  • Dick Cheney
    Dick Cheney

    There's nothing abhorrent about planning for NBC warfare, it's a necessity.

  • jeff K
    jeff K

    You didn't just travel there for this video, did you?

  • youtert

    That was an especially nice touch, Clarice.

  • Icelife

    I think Tom Scott's job is really amazing

  • Liron Chen
    Liron Chen

    "acting like you own the place" - thank you, youve spoken to the locals and actually listened (y)

  • Hayden Westfield-Bell (Wodewose)
    Hayden Westfield-Bell (Wodewose)

    Wasn't the anthrax experiment on the island to do with Operation Vegetarian, the goal of which was to explore using anthrax as a weapon against Germany?

  • Jard C
    Jard C

    Scotland the slave. Dumping ground for English nukes and experiments. No surrender to Anglo-Saxons. Free soon. Up the SNLA and Dark Harvest haha

  • 1973Washu

    "One wrong word can come back to haunt you" Piers Morgan - Hold my beer ..

  • AKuTepion

    Hello Tom, I understood you're selling an island for 500 pounds. Please get in touch with me. I'm willing to accept your payment of 500 pounds immediately. After you send me money, I'll be very happy to become a new owner of the island.

  • deathpony698

    Every bloody video title of his sounds like it could be AI generated now

  • TheDroidBay

    0:25 "One of the reasons I want to respect that request is because I've been called a 'guffy' for the 80th time this trip and I'm starting to think it might not be friendly"

  • Leone

    april fools really should just be banned, that shitty "tradition" have caused more harm then [*Something sensationalist].

  • Kiefer Lamb
    Kiefer Lamb

    Let the bidding begin: £502

  • Black Stick
    Black Stick

    Tom was the voice actor

  • zijuiy wttuy
    zijuiy wttuy

    Let’s take a moment to appreciate that Tom probably spent as much on voice actors on Fiverr as this family on buying back the island

  • Draeas

    _"Inter arma enim silent leges."_ - In times of war, the law falls silent.

  • Jack Kraken
    Jack Kraken

    Finally an island I can afford. I'm placing my bid of 502 pounds please.

    • zijuiy wttuy
      zijuiy wttuy

      I’m writing my letter to the Prime Minister to buy the island for $500.

  • dennis reeves
    dennis reeves

    what a twat - just having a go being a smart arse with the joy of hindsight

  • Carl Trotter
    Carl Trotter

    0:31 - Thanks for pointing it out. That is an attitude that I wish more people had. Scotland’s risk of becoming independent only gets worse because of attitudes like that. -Carl, Glasgow.

  • fdfac

    The color space and subtle changes are remarkable. Great production value.

  • H G
    H G

    “Inter arma silent leges”


    2:37 i hate myself for noticing this

  • RaptorJesus

    "From all the world, Germany-" A German. In the 80s. Wanting to buy an "Anthrax Island". How is that not a Bond Villain origin story?

  • Uekiguy

    Cyanide Island for sale: contact me.

  • The Ultimate Reductionist
    The Ultimate Reductionist

    500 pounds or best offer: Me: ok.. can I trade my electric tricycle for it?

  • The Ultimate Reductionist
    The Ultimate Reductionist

    Murdering sheep was unjustified, unless they were wild sheep whom we had no control over eventually dying anyway. Learn antinatalist animal rights (AAR).

  • BeanieMan

    It's a shame there's not a castle on that island, then we could have quite literally found the unfortunately named castle anthrax

  • Mrinmoy Roy
    Mrinmoy Roy

    So I can still buy it for 500 pounds, right? Should I to Borris Johnson?

  • Nah

    Hi Tom, I am interested in buying your island, my offer is £750, please let me know

  • Szymon Starzycki
    Szymon Starzycki

    Having James Vitch voice in there is exactly the level of details "The Greatest Title Sequence I've Ever Seen" video praised. Good work!

  • Iraqiboi999

    I actually like your old videos better then your new ones there’s nothing wrong with the new one I actually like the new one but In MY OPINION I like your old videos.

  • Caged

    I’m writing my letter to the Prime Minister to buy the island for $500.

  • fouoii gyhh
    fouoii gyhh

    Tom’s getting surprised by his videos a lot lately. I like the feeling that we’re both learning

  • Peter Dunlop
    Peter Dunlop

    Who advised Tom Scott on pronunciation? The letter i in Gruinard comes before the n, not after it. The correct pronunciation is Groon-ard, not Grunn-yard.

    • fouoii gyhh
      fouoii gyhh

      "acting like we own the place" that was a funny thing. And so true. It seems to have happened all around the world.

  • yash charkhi
    yash charkhi

    SUBSCRIBE!!!!!!!!! HIM

    • yash charkhi
      yash charkhi

      Please do

  • 보람영일

    The muddled zinc simultaneously argue because aluminium occasionally drown given a daffy mist. scandalous, uneven plaster

  • Miki's Gaming
    Miki's Gaming

    i swear the Australian one is stig whemes.

  • WhatNow Sami
    WhatNow Sami

    I'm from Ethiopia... The f would someone in Ethiopia get from owning an island in Scotland?!!! This is crazy

  • Grant Buote
    Grant Buote

    so did the original owners buy it back from the gov't for 500 quid?

  • bird up
    bird up

    4:58 I felt that

  • Ptao Tom
    Ptao Tom

    "I am prepared to offer £501 immediately" sounded so much like one of James Veitch's sketches

  • skatemetrix

    Now anthrax-free!

  • Jay Ket
    Jay Ket

    great video tom

    • Ptao Tom
      Ptao Tom


  • Dylan

    People don’t understand why we need to test these substances, without any knowledge of how to stop, cure or abolish a “problem” we leave our selfs open to an opportunity of destruction. The basic of all concept to get the point is flinching before you get hurt, your body’s aware of the danger and reacts. If you’ve never seen or experienced “danger” you’ll never recognize when it’s coming.

  • Onii-chan is watching you
    Onii-chan is watching you

    Well at least the real owners weren't hounded with constant letters and phone calls. Tbh, it was quite an effective false flag operation.

  • Chandan Bhowal
    Chandan Bhowal

    Bruh the voice actors 😭😭😭

  • Clayton Erickson
    Clayton Erickson

    Anthrax is natural. Whats the big deal?

  • Rheza

    I accidentally unsubscribe then I forgot the name of your Chanel so i typed "that british guy that explains things" and here im back 👍👍👍

  • yaliso gioouy
    yaliso gioouy

    "acting like we own the place" that was a funny thing. And so true. It seems to have happened all around the world.

  • Aleksandar Grozdanoski
    Aleksandar Grozdanoski

    I knew about this island, I don't even remember how I discovered the story few years ago. I'm not sure if it's rendered completely safe though.

    • yaliso gioouy
      yaliso gioouy

      Let’s take a moment to appreciate that Tom probably spent as much on voice actors on Fiverr as this family on buying back the island

  • SalvSays

    When i send a letter to Scotland offering to buy this island, would you like to be directly mentioned as the reason to my inquiry? For example Tom scott famous ISdownsr stated i could buy your island for 501 pounds

  • Bike DXer
    Bike DXer

    The island looks very bleak and dead with all its three bushes.

  • Jonathan Denni
    Jonathan Denni

    Did the government penalize the news organizations for false reporting causing a public nuisance?

  • Philip Jones
    Philip Jones

    I do wonder if the original owners decided to purchase the island back for the aforementioned £500?

  • Рома Почаев
    Рома Почаев

    at this point I can mute the audio, turn on subtitles and still be able to hear Tom's voice just fine

  • strange lee
    strange lee

    Hannibal Lecter takes long walks there.

  • Wiliam m
    Wiliam m


  • Alex Noman
    Alex Noman

    Imagine writing to the president/chancellor/PM so they can forward your letter to the correct bureaucrat. The sheer amount of delusion on display is staggering! I still hope most of these are a joke, but it really seems like thinking has gone out of fashion.

  • Miroslav Houdek
    Miroslav Houdek

    Makes me feel sad that I don't even have 500 quid for the island.

  • Trabber Shir
    Trabber Shir

    Before starting to watch, is this one of those video titles the AI gave you?

  • Colm Hauser
    Colm Hauser

    Did this channel used to be called Enyay?

  • Altaranalt

    These videos are so good. Really enjoy watching them!

  • adinwashere

    The Press lie??? I'm shocked!

  • Marcia Lindsay
    Marcia Lindsay

    So.. wanna go halvsies?

  • Bolia Fops
    Bolia Fops

    Let’s take a moment to appreciate that Tom probably spent as much on voice actors on Fiverr as this family on buying back the island

  • Alexandre P. Monferrari
    Alexandre P. Monferrari

    The quality of your channel is in the subtle details. An englishman respectful of scotland won that video for me. And i m latin american...

    • Bolia Fops
      Bolia Fops

      Dear Tom, please forward my offer of 500 Kg for the Scottish island to the correct channels. Thank you.

  • reggiep75

    I'd buy it.. Dear Mr Scott, I hear you recently visited an island of great significance.................... 😉😂🤣😂🤣

  • Sam Cyanide
    Sam Cyanide

    wheelie island

  • David

    Tom Scott for sale, starting bid 500£ Contact directly gruinard island

  • Allan Peda
    Allan Peda

    I thought you were talking about Plum Island.

  • Rick Woods
    Rick Woods

    Most of this video makes me seasick

  • Soinas Doyi
    Soinas Doyi

    Imagine just scrolling on ebay and seeing a fooking Scottish island being sold for £500 today, that would be wild.

  • softy8088

    The amount of things the press gets wrong is astounding. Only a small percentage of mistakes ever get corrections.

    • Soinas Doyi
      Soinas Doyi

      What about the Slayer suburbs, Pantera peninsula or Megadeth beach?

  • ceffydriver

    So if you built a castle on the island, it would make it castle Anthrax right?

  • frigginjerk

    Is there a castle on the island, by any chance? Perhaps one with a Grail-shaped beacon?

  • Brenton Moore
    Brenton Moore

    Tom could title a video 'The Fart the moved Spain Two Inches East' and I probably wouldn't be more purturbed than usual.

  • fatehyabali


  • Lifecraft

    Dr. Lecter approves.

  • bilij pdan
    bilij pdan

    Imagine just scrolling on ebay and seeing a fooking Scottish island being sold for £500 today, that would be wild.

  • Different Saturner
    Different Saturner

    Killing hope! How the earliest form of 'virus test' started. It wasn't the virus but the same IMO. I wish you upload another video in 20 years explaining how the c virus was created & did spread by those criminal business syndicates, big pharma with the help of the Govts of all countries. (Thu 03 June 2021 12h31)

  • Ryan Peteranna (RatherRyan)
    Ryan Peteranna (RatherRyan)

    I would like to buy it for £502.

  • sarcasmo57

    Dear Tom, please forward my offer of 500 Kg for the Scottish island to the correct channels. Thank you.

  • Munjee

    Tom, you last name is literally Scott, you're more of a Scottsman coming to the Midlands and pretending you own the place

  • Torhek The Great
    Torhek The Great

    I swear that ever since the AI titles video, it seems that every single one of the titles for the new videos are AI generated

  • ScottyDM aka: Scott Miller
    ScottyDM aka: Scott Miller

    Never mind the island, what's happening with Castle Anthrax? Did they ever manage to evict those nuns?

  • sotuur aeei
    sotuur aeei

    Imagine just scrolling on ebay and seeing a fooking Scottish island being sold for £500 today, that would be wild.

  • Robbie Weld
    Robbie Weld

    wow great video, it's made me come to the decision that I will kill myself